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A meaningful new mural in Tauranga

Image of Tauranga moana mural

Published: March 1, 2024

The Real team in the Bay of Plenty came together early 2023 to unveil their new taonga – a mural on their whare, depicting the legend of Mauao (Mount Maunganui).

Designer, Wim Hovens, worked closely with Kaihautū Anaru Hawkins, former Kaiwhirimuka, Chaz Naera, and the team at Wise Property Solutions to create the meaningful piece.

The group also had korero with local iwi, Ngati Ranginui to ensure the legend was well represented through the mural.

This new mural follows the creation of a 17-metre-long mural at Te Whare o te Hononga in Kirikiriroa Hamilton, which was unveiled in 2022. It has been designed in the same style to connect the two pieces, most notably through the same Real tumanako pattern (made up of ‘x’ shapes) in the sun’s rays, representing the light Real kaimahi bring to the lives of taiohi.

Caroline Henry, team coach for the Whetū Marewa service in Bay of Plenty, reflects on what the new mural means for her team’s mahi and the taiohi they support:

As a team we’re privileged to have this taonga unite us in our work together with our taiohi and our whenua. The legend speaks of the sun rising over the land, ‘fixing the nameless one to that place’, thus beginning a new life as Mauao.

Some of our taiohi feel they don’t have identity or agency and don’t have a place to belong. Our hope is that they always feel they belong and welcomed in our whare, thus progressing their journey to living their very best lives as they determine it, as we walk alongside them.

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